This three-day crash course has been devised by the activist and author Dan Glass (United Queerdom, published 2020, by Bloomsbury). Aiming to empower LGBTQ+ people to explore forms of activism that deploy creative methodologies, Dan will draw on his own experience of direct action in ACT-UP and the self-defence movement, Bender Defenders. Strategies will also be shared by guest speakers – Matt Bonner (who aired ‘The Baby Trump’) and Mica Campbell of Sisters Uncut. The manual, Beautiful Trouble, by Andrew Boyd, will further provide a ‘toolbox’ of tactics to delve into and explore. Participants can book-up for the whole course or else dip-in for one-off talks or workshops.
Dec 2 Friday
Queer Activist Herstory 101.
From the Legends of the Gay Liberation Front to the Queers of Tomorrow' - we will explore over five decades of LGBTQ+ culture and protest and how they're shaped queer history and identity. Discover the stories behind those who fought for queer liberation and the creative activism behind this revolutionary history.
Dec 3 Saturday
Beautiful Trouble Toolkit: Introduction
The Beautiful Trouble Arts & Action Training digs into the dynamic tension between the expressive value of art and the instrumental imperative of strategically targeted political actions. We look at a host of ways to integrate art into protest and collective action — to add flair to your platform and bring the party to your party line! It’s a how-to course that covers guerrilla theatre, street bands, murals, wheat pasting, billboard alteration, giant puppets, beautiful
banners, and more.
Discussion with Matt Bonner
Matt Bonner designed the infamous Baby Trump Blimp - A six metre high inflatable depiction of President Trump as an angry baby, complete with a malevolent constipated grimace, orange skin, nappy-clad and a mobile phone clutched in his tiny hand.
The balloon was part of a series of protests against Trump’s first visit to the UK as president in July 2018. Trump Baby garnered worldwide media attention, with Nigel Farage calling it "the biggest insult to a sitting US president ever." Donald Trump himself said of the balloon that "I guess when they put out blimps to make me feel unwelcome, no reason for me to go to London."
Dec 4 Sunday
Beautiful Trouble Toolkit: Strategic Planning
Now armed with the Beautiful Trouble Toolkit, it’s time to consider tactics and strategic planning. Beautiful Trouble’s Strategic Planning workshops dig into fundamental organising frameworks and key principles for developing and evaluating grassroots campaign strategies.
We explore the concepts of political leverage and points of intervention. We examine case studies where social justice movements have built successful campaigns that strategically escalate, building more collective power, capacity, and leverage along the way — until victory!
Discussion with Mica Coca from Sisters Uncut.
Sisters Uncut is a feminist direct action group that is opposed to cuts to UK government services for domestic violence survivors. The group identify as revolutionary feminists and police and prison abolitionists, and is open to women (including trans and intersex women), non-binary, agender and gender variant people.